Friday, August 21, 2009

Of Fire Ants and Hummingbirds

One thing that I did not miss about living in the southern regions of the country is fire ants. They certainly belong in one of the lower circles of hell. If you have not lived in the south then you have not been introduced to these nasty little devils. These are not the innocuous little black Fix your manicure, 'hoants of my youth in the northwest. These little mites lay in wait and jump out to lay their torture on unsuspecting bare or sandled feet and ankles.

This is the south, y'all. Sandals are part of the uniform (and no wisecracks about the pedicure or I'm gonna have to hurt you).

Yesterday as I, all unsuspectingly, was retrieving my groceries from my trunk I felt at first a little burning, then more then more. It feels like someone is sticking pins in your feet, little devils. I got four bites in one toe alone. They must have thought it was a smorgasbord.

God I hate them.

Speaking of southern wildlife, there has been a hummingbird snacking on the bottlebrush trees outside my window. I am still trying to get a decent picture of the little guy. I probably shouldn't be calling it a 'guy'. I think it's a female since she isn't all adorned and all.

Anyway, this is the best I have so far.

Here's hoping your day brings more hummingbirds than fire ants.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Quack? Or not...

The day after E was born a nurse called me and said, "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" I informed her that my husband and I had decided against that procedure.

The next morning I got another phone call from the nurse who asked "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" Once again I informed her that we had decided to leave E intact.

Sunday (yes, I spent 3 days in the hospital following a vaginal birth...they were watching my blood pressure and if it hadn't behaved on that day they were going to send E home and keep me!!) I again recevied a call from the nurse asking "Is your little boy going to have a circumcision today?" Sighing and suppressing my urge to scream, "didn't anybody read (or write in) his chart!!!", I told her 'no'.

Yesterday I took E to his pediatrician for his school checkup. He did not see an actual MD. He saw a board certified pediatric nurse practitioner with the same office we went to when we were last in Florida. The reason I am questioning her is that she mentioned 'phimosis' and said I should schedule an appointment with a urologist. She asked me if we have been stretching his foreskin. I said no.

Now I am kind of confused. Everything that I have read says that it is normal for a little boy's foreskin to still not retract at age 6 and not to worry about it. They also say not to manipulate it if it doesn't easily retract. You could hurt him and cause damage. One website said that by age 10, 80% of little boys retract and by 18 it's about 98%. I think age 6 is too early to diagnose phimosis.

My question, dear internets, should I call a urologist and waste a $40 copay or should I listen to the American Academy of Pediatrics, WebMD and Dr. Google and say that this ARNP is a quack? I know that intact little boys in this country are a bit on the rare side but she is board certified. Shouldn't she know this?